Easter without Jane is not without hope.
It’s our first holiday since Jane passed away. We miss her terribly and the ache of her absence is profound. Of all the holidays we could have experienced first without Jane, I’m so thankful it was Easter. We celebrate Christmas big at our house. Thanksgiving bears many standing traditions and birthdays are special milestones. Though we always celebrate Easter, the specifics have varied every year since Robert and I got married. We don’t do the Easter bunny at our house and we rarely participate in egg hunts. The date, of course, changes every year and so do our plans. Sometimes we are with extended family and sometimes we are not.
But it’s not our lack of traditions that make me glad Easter is our first holiday without Jane, it’s that Easter is the most hopeful holiday of all. Acts 2:23-24 says, “This man (Jesus) was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.” This necessitates repeating, it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. Praise God! God reigns victorious, sin and death could not hold him.
Perhaps it took an empty bed in our home to treasure the empty tomb so much more.
I’ve always cherished Easter and what we really celebrate. But I don’t think I meditated on how the worst tragedy in history became the most victorious. I don’t think I’ve pondered enough how Jesus’ suffering and being brought low, brought Him glory and secured my salvation. Today is hard, the heaviness of grief is great. Today is also cause for joy. The power, mercy and grace of my Savior is unfathomable. Perhaps it took an empty bed in our home to treasure the empty tomb so much more.